English 1101/ 38
Rough Draft 2
I can’t focus. I switch my attention to check twitter and Facebook, just in case something has changed in the past 10 minutes, when I last attempted to relieve my anxiety about writing this paper. Joanne Simpson, author of the 2006 article titled “Multitasking State of Mind” in Johns Hopkins Magazine, warns us of the millennium generation’s weakness to multitasking. Our generation is so involved with social media that we are not mentally with the person in front of us, we are distracted with technology. The need to answer the text or tweet sent to your phone immediately has increased since the article was published and hindered communication skills. Simpson proposes the millennium generation feels anxious when we don’t multitask. She feels it is addictive to break away from our homework to update social media, leaving us with less time to do the assignment. Simpson says there was a “tidal wave” in 2006 at the Johns Hopkins Campus involving very different students that came out of nowhere (p 4). Since 2006, this issue has become worse. Students tend to have multiple tabs open while on the computer, even if the tabs are unrelated to the research paper they’re writing. The millennium generation is changing the way people communicate, complete tasks, and procrastinate in everyday activities.
Communication is changing in everyday conversations due to the easily available internet. I have been with friends trying to study for a big test coming up, and one of us continues to be distracted by our phones. Instead of being present at lunch with friends, we feel the need to be on our phone updating what we are doing on twitter to our followers. Why wouldn’t we enjoy lunch and update twitter later? The need to be doing extra all the time seems to have a pattern in this generations habbits. Simpson feels that students could not pay attention in her class because she didn’t have the “split second, image-splashing pace of a Spike TV commercial or an Internet pop up ad” (p 11). “…they are often tuned in everywhere but where they actually are” (p 11).
The internet has made students feel less connected to the world. Have you ever been telling a story to someone when they pick up their phone, begin to type, and moments later say, “Huh? Sorry I didn’t hear you.”? The need to respond immediately when our phones light up can be a serious communication issue. The moment you tune out of your class and towards the latest drama in the group message with your best friends, you miss the teacher saying when the assignment was due, bound to complain later about not knowing about it. If you sit in the cafeteria and take a moment to look around, you see students having lunch with friends, but not entirely. Almost every table I have observed, at least one student is in la-la land not paying attention to their classmate talking. They could have their computers out, clearly working on school work, but one is distracted by the buzzer of their phone. Simpson says students seem “more distracted than disrespectful (p 9). “For some students, attention spans hover around 1 minute, 45